MacKenzie Atlantic prototypes face shield for Covid-19 frontlines, but suppliers warn materials running low
***UPDATE March 27, 10PM***
We have been working on overdrive this week to make sure Nova Scotia has face shields for frontline healthcare workers in the weeks and months ahead.
Our team has secured raw materials amid global market shortages, is building a die for mass production, and will be preparing an assembly area over the weekend.
We aim to be in production of face shields for healthcare workers next week. Please understand: we strongly believe that healthcare workers who are dealing with sick patients, including those already infected with Covid19, are *most at risk* of infection. Therefore, our #1 priority will be to supply the hospital and first responder frontlines.
We will have more updated information on our website over the weekend.
UPDATE March 26
Suppliers are warning that U.S. companies are buying up mass shipments of the material needed to make these face shields. Provincial/federal governments: we must act now & place orders if we want to secure materials before they run out globally.
March 25, 2020
MacKenzie Atlantic has designed, sourced material for, and built a prototype of an inexpensive face shield that could be used on the frontlines of the fight against Covid-19.
The face shields are inexpensive, lightweight, fully adjustable and can be mass produced just outside Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Company owner Matthew MacKenzie says the shop could start producing them within a week of an order, and has the capacity to produce 15,000 to 30,000 per week for hospitals, firefighters, police and other frontline service providers. These volumes would create additional short-term employment for local residents who may have recently lost employment due to business closures.
”We can design and mass produce almost anything made from either plastic or metal, and we’re geared up to run large quantities, quickly, with strict quality controls,” says MacKenzie. “Even aluminum emergency cot frames if hospitals need more temporary beds in a pinch.”
MacKenzie Atlantic is ISO 9001:2015 certified and has stringent quality controls. The shop’s 20,000 sq ft main facility is already set up with the necessary measures to meet Nova Scotia’s health protection rules for businesses during the State of Emergency.
“If there’s a way we can help support the frontlines and our communities in the fight against this disease,” MacKenzie says, “we’re there.”
New protective measures in place, adhering to Nova Scotia COVID-19 rules
Sunday, March 22, 2020
Musquodoboit Harbour, N.S. — With a State of Emergency declared today in Nova Scotia, MacKenzie Atlantic will be putting additional physical distancing measures in place to ensure the health and safety of our employees. The health and safety of our employees is our top priority.
The Nova Scotia Government states: “Any workplace or business that is not deemed essential (or not already required to be closed) can remain open as long as a two-metre (6 foot) distance can be maintained.”
Thankfully, our 26 employees have 25,000 square feet of shop space in which to carry out their work, and our main facility in Musquodoboit Harbour was originally designed to hold six different businesses, each with its own entrance and emergency exit, bay door and washroom.
With the following additional measures in place, we are confident that we can continue our work for the national and international defence sectors while maintaining the physical distancing rules to keep everyone safe.
Effective immediately, the following additional protective measures will be in place:
Each of our six (6) bays will be separated into its own self-contained zone.
A maximum of five (5) employees will be permitted in each zone at any given time with employees using that zone’s entrance/exit and washroom.
Breaks and lunches will be staggered
No more than three (3) people will be allowed in the lunch room at a time, and employees are encouraged to continue eating outdoors or in their vehicles or in their zone, maintaining a minimum of 6 feet between them and others.
Administrative staff who can work from home are permitted to do so.
Our facilities remain closed to the public, and we have indefinitely postponed shop tours for customers and media to see newly installed robotics equipment.
We continue to:
Enforce self-isolation requirements for employees and family members returning from abroad
Remind each other of hand washing protocols
Routinely disinfect door knobs and surfaces throughout the day
Monitor Covid-19 updates for changes to workplace rules and recommendations
We have also reached out to elected officials to let them know our equipment can be retooled at a moment’s notice to manufacture any medical or emergency supplies that may be necessary or in short supply.
We stand ready to provide any support we can.
We're all in this together.